Mike Southon is a former mobile DJ, musician and singer as well as an astute businessman. He was co-founder of The Instruction Set in 1984, selling training in computer services, later selling on out to Hoskyns (now Cap Gemini Ernst & Young). He’s collaborated in and helped set up numerous companies, and is a published author several times over – and is regarded as one of the most experienced entrepreneur mentors in the UK. His original book from 2002, ‘The Beermat Entrepreneur’ has been updated for 2018. He says one the secrets of entrepreneurial success is to ‘find a foil’ – someone who compliments what you do, and be nice!
Peter Aiers is Chief Executive at the Churches Conservation Trust, and he has had a life-long interest in history and conservation. His organisation maintains over 300 historic places of worship and he manages 80 people and a multi million pound fundraising pot. He’s spent 12 years at the organisation and took over as CEO seven months ago. He’s always worked in conservation (apart from a stint working in a chippy!) and says it was refreshing being given ‘the push to make something happen and to prove myself’ when he was appointed the first conservation officer for the Church of England. He loves the outdoors, Manchester rock music and new challenges.
Helen Brand is Chief Executive of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, the global body for professional accountants – yet admits to not having trained in accountancy! She maintains that a career choice in the industry is a terrific grounding for any business. Her personal interests lie in politics and international relations. She enjoys travel, and is a supporter of gender diversity in business. Having spent time working in the children’s shoe department of a store, she says we shouldn’t shy away from jobs which might not necessarily boost a CV – because they can be career- and knowledge-enhancing all the same! Helen was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list in June 2011.
Karen Jones is the founder of Citywealth magazine and the supporting organisation, which has been running for almost a decade. She shares how a trip to Nicaragua inspired her to set up her own business, seeing her through to working with high net worth individuals, and becoming an advocate for women in business. Karen also delves into her love of the outdoors, extensive travelling across the globe, and a love of dogs that somehow crept up on her.
Joining Sue Dougan in the hot seat is Sarah Kelly, CEO of Stagecoach Performing Arts, for Stagecoach’s 30th anniversary since its inception in 1988. She discusses the importance of performing arts in helping children to develop well-rounded life skills for adulthood, as well as providing a safe space for self-expression and creativity – especially in the wake of a huge drop in Government funding for the creative arts in mainstream education. Sarah shares her earliest memories of visiting her father at his chain of butcher shops, and how she developed her strong work ethic from him – as well as never forgetting her mother’s saying, “Choose what you enjoy and you’ll always be good at it”. Plus, she talks about how her own experience of amateur dramatics as a teenager feeds into the way she approaches her CEO role now; why she thinks pushing boundaries and moving with the times is so central to successful business; and how failure is important for future success.
On this edition of Track Record: Leadership and executive coach, Michael Banks. He's well known for working with leaders and management teams in the US, particularly with American Express. He has just written a book about his experiences in needing a new kidney - which he credits with throwing new light on his personal and business life. He's also a noted speaker and writer.
Sue Dougan meets branding and marketing expert Nadim Sadek. Nadim founded Sadek Wynberg Research in the 1990s, later sold on to WPP - he conducted research for the development of brands and communications for many of the world's blue-chip companies, including Unilever, Bacardi Global Brands, Kimberly-Clark, Vodafone and Sony Ericsson.
Sue is joined today by Jason Downes, CEO of Powwownow, who have changed the way business communicate with each other. Sue and Jason discuss this early aims and goals, his journey to becoming CEO of Powwownow and the music that has helped him along the way
Sue Dougan sits down with Peter Tatchell, founder of the Peter Tatchell foundation, to find out more about his life, career, and hear his musical favourites. Peter has been a campaigner for human rights, democracy, LGBT freedom and global justice since 1967 and is a member of the queer human rights group OutRage!, and the left-wing of the Green Party.
Sue Dougan is joined by Sharon Richey, CEO of BEcause Experiential Marketing, in this week's Track Record. Originally from South Africa, Sharon looks back at her childhood and her career into business and entrepreneurship. She tells Sue about her attempt to organise a beer festival in her family home and how, subsequently, acquired the name ‘The Shebeen Queen’ at the tender age of sixteen.